As club spins and group activities have increased in recent weeks, Cycling Ulster wish to remind members and clubs of the importance of maintaining good etiquette when on their group spins.
Cycling in a group helps a cyclist in many ways – safety in numbers, benefit of wind resistance, increased average
speed etc. but cyclists should remember the following points to ensure safety within the group.
- Communicate clearly, verbal and non-verbal communication will inform everyone around of the riders
intended actions and highlight potential hazards to other riders and road users. Cyclists within the group should
communicate up and down the line, both by calling out (“car up”,“car down”,“slowing”,“stopping” etc.) and
signalling (pointing out potholes or hazards, or intention to change position) so that all riders are made aware of
the obstacles/conditions each rider encounters.
- Holding the line – cyclists in a group need to cycle in a steady, straight line, holding the wheel of the rider ahead,
so that they are predictable to both the other riders and other road users.
- Sudden braking and changes of speed are dangerous in group and should be avoided.
- A cyclist should be scanning at least two to three riders ahead at all times – by doing this a rider will be aware of
any problems further up the line.
- A cyclist should always shoulder check before changing position.
- For narrow roads or where there is other traffic, the group may need to single out and it is essential that this is done
smoothly maintaining the existing speed – an agreed system should be used each time e.g. inside rider moves ahead to allow the outside rider slip in behind.
- Cyclists within a group should never tailgate or overlap wheels (ride with half their front wheel alongside the back wheel of the rider in front) with other riders as this allows no reaction space if something happens unexpectedly.
- A group conserves energy and maintains pace by regularly switching the lead riders, but it is essential that this changeover is done smoothly – the rider moving to the front must keep the speed of the group and must be careful to move gradually into position at the head of the line. The rider leaving that position, must on the other hand, ease off, to allow the new leader come up alongside while maintaining the group speed. This momentary easing off allows that rider a short rest before slotting back in to tail the group.
PACELINE AND DRAFTING ADVICE